Tarique Barnes is a veteran linebacker and defensive leader for Illinois. On Thursday, Barnes revealed his plans for the 2023 season.

In a brief statement on Twitter, Barnes wrote “Let’s ride Illini Nation,” along with a graphic that said “I’m back.” A member of the 2019 recruiting class, Barnes will play a fifth season for the Illini in 2023.

During the 2022 season, Barnes finished third on the team with 8.5 TFL while adding 1.5 sacks and 46 total tackles.

Barnes’ most productive season came in 2021 when he produced 80 total tackles. For his career, Barnes has 165 tackles, 16 TFL, 4.5 sacks, 2 interceptions, 7 pass breakups and 3 forced fumbles.

For a defense making a transition to a new DC and losing some veteran pieces to the NFL Draft, getting Barnes back for one more year is a big win for Bret Bielema’s team in 2023.